The Syrian army’s 9th armored division and Hizballah launched an offensive Saturday on the Beit Jinn enclave against several Syrian rebel groups. DEBKAfile notes that the enclave’s capture would bring the assault force up to the Syrian-Israeli border on Mt. Hermon. In the 1973 war, the same 9th Division tanks broke through to the Golan before being thrown back. Some took part in the recent Daraa operation on southern Syria’s border with Jordan.
The Syrian-Hizballah force immediately overran the village of Ay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and stands 6km from the Israeli border and 21km from the nearest Israeli Golan locale. The Beit Jinn enclave is just 10km broad and 6 -km long. Its 20,000 inhabitants live in the valleys of the rugged mountain slopes.